Laura Blackwell, Our Countess of Turczynowicz – June 24 Meeting

Think of a person from St. Catharines who was:

  1. A world famous singer
  2. A member of the Polish aristocracy
  3. A war prisoner and refugee
  4. A humanitarian and author
  5. A patron of the arts

It can only be Laura Blackwell.

On June 24, Stan Skrzeszewski presented “Laura Blackwell, Our Countess of Turczynowicz: Opera Singer, Activist, Independent Woman” for the last meeting of the 2020-2021 season. This is a one of a kind story that should not be missed. Click below to begin the video.

Searching for St. Catharines in the Archives – May 27, 2021 meeting

On March 27, the Historical Society had the pleasure of hosting David Sharron’s, head of the Archives & Special Collections department at Brock University, illustrated talk entitled, “Searching for St. Catharines in the Archives.” Archival records are everywhere. Finding them is the challenge.

Using the Shickluna Shipyard as an example, David displayed the varied records related to St. Catharines available in the Brock Archives and gave hints how to find such materials when conducting research.

Here is the recording of the presentation:

For all of the recorded meeting for 2020-2021, visit the Society’s YouTube channel –

BME Church, Salem Chapel – April 22, 2021 Meeting

On April 22 at 7:30 p.m., the Historical Society had the pleasure of hosting Rochelle Bush who presented on the BME Church, Salem Chapel in St. Catharines. Designated a National Historical Site, the Church was built to accommodate African American individuals and families fleeing slavery in the United States notably including Harriet Tubman. The Salem Chapel remains an active congregation today. Rochelle is a Church Historian and Trustee.

Here is a recording of Rochelle’s presentation:

“Richard Pierpoint and Lemuel Brown: Fight for Freedom” by Peter Meyler

Not even mountains of snow can stop the Historical Society! Thanks to our virtual meetings.

On February 25, 2021, Peter Meyler presented: “Richard Pierpoint and Lemuel Brown: Fight for Freedom.” A very timely subject for Black History Month.

This virtual meeting that was recorded and is available here and on YouTube: